California Community Foundation Announces 123 Summer Programs in LA County to Receive $7.4M

More than 62,000 students across LA County will be served through these programs, which was made possible in part by a $5M gift to CCF from Ballmer Group

Ballmer Group has invested $10M total to fund summer programming this year throughout LA County

Los Angeles, CA — The California Community Foundation (CCF) announced today the 123 summer programs that will receive $7.4 million in grants through the LA County Summer Learning Initiative. The grants support learning and enrichment programs for low-income and vulnerable students in K-12 schools and community-based organizations and will reach more than 62,000 students across Los Angeles County over the next three months.

This unprecedented investment in summer programs is made possible through the generosity of several partner foundations and donors including a transformative gift of $5 million from Ballmer Group, a philanthropic organization co-founded by Connie and Steve Ballmer. Major contributors to the initiative also include Carl and Roberta Deutsch Foundation, Silver Giving Foundation, Stuart Foundation, Heising-Simons Foundation, and Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies.

Ballmer Group’s investment will provide $4 million for schools and community-based organizations across the county, $925,000 to support LA Unified’s Early Education Summer Program, and $75,000 to support summer youth employment efforts through Hire LA’s Youth. Their commitment to CCF is part of a $10 million total investment made by Ballmer Group to fund summer programming this year throughout LA County, which includes $3,000,000 to the LA Education Recovery Fund, $1,500,000 for the Play Equity Fund, and $500,000 to the GRYD Foundation for Summer Night Lights.

“As LA prepares to reopen, it has never been more urgent to invest in summer programming for our kids – and right now, many nonprofits and community-based organizations are struggling to meet the overwhelming demand,” said Nina Revoyr, Executive Director, Ballmer Group – Los Angeles. “We hope that the collective efforts of our grantees and fellow investors will help keep tens of thousands of L.A.’s young people engaged, learning, and safe this summer.”

Among the recipients of the LA County Summer Learning Initiative grants is the Boys & Girls Club of Pasadena. Chief Executive Officer, Lisa J. Cavelier stated, “This summer is a critical time for kids to get back on track with learning, growing and playing. Summer programs like the Boys & Girls Club of Pasadena are meeting a huge need in the community for safe places that provide academic and social supports, engaging and positive programs, and mentorship opportunities. We are grateful for this grant, which will enable us to provide nearly 200 community kids this summer with low-cost, diverse programs, including swimming, tutoring, ‘Summer Brain Gain’ active learning activities, mental health and mindfulness programming, leadership development opportunities, and so much more.”

CCF first launched the LA County Summer Learning Initiative in 2020, in partnership with the LA County Office of Education, to address the physical closures of schools and community centers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The disruption to traditional school operations exacerbated long-time gaps in educational opportunities and access along racial and socioeconomic lines for the County’s young people.

As schools and programs begin to open back up there remains an urgent need for responsive summertime learning environments to mitigate learning loss and to address the social-emotional needs of youth who have been facing social-isolation and disruption in their lives, because of the pandemic.

“This year the needs of our students have only grown due to the continued physical closures of schools and youth-serving community centers,” said Antonia Hernández, President and CEO of the California Community Foundation. “CCF and its partners recognize that need and are pleased to provide the resources necessary to help nonprofits and school-based summer programs offer engaging and critical services to their students this summer.”

Superintendent Maribel Garcia of the El Monte City School District, said of receiving this grant: “We are extremely excited and grateful to be selected as a grantee by the California Community Foundation and its partners. The El Monte City School District, prides itself on providing an educational environment that prepares children for their scholarly journey, which is partly why we created the TK and Kinder Readiness Program. The COVID-19 pandemic has spotlighted inequities within education, especially in regard to school readiness.”

She went on to say, “Our early prevention program is focused on building upon individual experiences to ensure that all students are kinder-ready. This grant helps us provide resources to our families to jumpstart their child’s education and mitigate the learning loss and socio-emotional disruptions that have occurred over the last year.”

In addition to grants for direct services this summer, CCF and Sobrato Philanthropies are supporting the Greater LA Education Foundation and Partnership for Youth and Children, which will help local school districts design effective summer programs that use new public funding resources.

Aligned partnerships include the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, the Greater LA Education Foundation, Los Angeles County Office of Education, Great Public Schools Now, Play Equity Fund, the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, and Expand LA.
“The summer months are a critical time to provide our young people with the extra support and instruction they need to catch up academically. At the same time, we must promote our students’ social-emotional wellbeing as key to effective teaching and learning,” said Debra Duardo, Los Angeles County Superintendent of Schools. “This initiative is a shining example of the power of partnerships. I am grateful to the California Community Foundation for creating opportunities to engage our students most in need of a summer learning boost.”

The full list of grantees can be found here.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Paula Valle Castañon at pvalle [@] calfund [.] org or 213.452.6233

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The California Community Foundation (CCF) has served as a public, charitable organization for Los Angeles County since 1915. Its mission is to lead positive systemic change that strengthens Los Angeles communities. CCF stewards $1.8 billion in assets and manages 1,700 charitable foundations, funds and legacies. For more information, please visit calfund.org.

For more information about the LA County Summer Learning Initiative please visit https://www.calfund.org/la-county-summer-learning-initiative/.

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